A game to encourage people to explore the carbon footprints of different activities and things.

CarbonCopies is a casual game where the player tries to match items and activities that have the same carbon footprint, to help people start to learn how footprints compare, and which lifestyle changes make a difference to your overall footprint (and which might not). It's an easy and fun way to start gaining an appreciation for carbon impact.

We're using data from Mike Berners-Lee's book, How Bad are Bananas? which we are also compiling into a reusable database. Mike has kindly agreed that this can be released under an open licence. (URL in progress)

The CarbonCopies team:

  • Premasagar Rose
  • Laura James
  • Josh Pickett
  • David Kendal
  • Isabell Long

with help from

  • Luke Nicholson
  • Duncan Clark

Carboncopies won the Carbon Literacy award at RewiredState Carbon and Energy

Ideas for taking this project forward

We're going to continue building up the database.

We should integrate the scoreboard system.

We need to connect the database live to the game, with an algorithm which automagically creates good game questions (the present version is hard-coded items and multiples).

There's lots more game types we could build using the basic engine and database...

We'd also like to tie in to Twitter and Facebook, so that players can challenge friends to see who can get the highest score via an easy post to a social network. In addition we would like players to be able to Tweet (or post to Facebook) any interesting carbon footprint fact.

Estimated costs for taking this project forward

£3000 (or more, for more; or less, for less)

About the data used for this project

We used data from Mike Berners-Lee's book, with permission, and also got permission to share his data more widely with attribution as below.

This was pretty easy to use with the work being converting book text into comparable strings and breaking out basic information and more rich detailed info.


The carbon footprint estimates in this database were calculated by Mike Berners-Lee of Small World Consulting for his book How Bad Are Bananas?. On the condition that this attribution is included in full, the database is made available under the Open Database License and the contents of the database are licensed under the Database Contents License. Mike would appreciate it if anyone creating projects with this data would let him know via

Project URL:

Created at

Rewired State: Carbon and Energy Hack Weekend

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